I’ve decided to do another article on weight loss since it’s such a huge topic these days among both diabetics and non diabetics alike. Actually one more article on this isn’t near enough as some sites have devoted their entire content to this, and they have a lot more content up than I do.
I actually am looking to branch out to other topics that are diabetes related like this one, and weight loss is a great place to start here. I’ve spoken about this topic already a number of times as part of other discussions but there’s just so many myths out there about this that I want to do a separate article touching on some of these.
There are a lot of factors that go into why someone becomes overweight, but in the end it boils down to storing an excess of fat. At one time this was necessary for survival, as we didn’t have a steady supply of food and our bodies have adapted to handle periods of famine, which for much of our evolutionary period as a species was not unusual.
So in periods of abundance, we would store more, and the problem now is that for a lot of the population, abundance never ceases, and the body just isn’t equipped to handle that. So we get fat so to speak, and stay fat.
So this is a dietary problem essentially, and unless you modify one’s diet appropriately, you just aren’t going to get anywhere.
I’m not sure where the heck the idea of thinking that calories have anything to do with one getting fat or lean came from, but it is a silly idea. With body weight, we’re talking mass here, not potential energy. It makes no sense to look at this from the perspective of calories driving our weight, and this is one of the big myths out there that get people off track.
What happens here is that a certain amount of the things we put into our body are retained, and we also excrete a certain amount, and both of these are matters of mass. So if you put 10 pounds of mass into your body and excrete 9 pounds, the net result is that you are one pound lighter, and so on.
So looking at how much energy you could derive from a pound of something, a pound of fat for instance, doesn’t really have anything to do with it. This makes the mistaken assumption that our bodies are closed systems, but they are clearly not, and energy in and out has really little to do with any of this, other than activity can help you excrete more.
Being active certainly doesn’t hurt here, but it’s been proven that any level of activity isn’t even going to affect one’s body weight in any significant way over time. You can lose a few pounds through increasing excretion, but the body will tend to adjust to this, making adjustments in your metabolism in an attempt to conserve body fat actually. You want to lose weight but your metabolism just isn’t on board.
So there’s two of the big myths right there, eat less calories and exercise more, and both of these are way off base, and this is why people fail as much as they do.
Being overweight is hormonally driven actually, and there are a number of hormones involved, but the biggest one by far is insulin. Insulin’s role is as the body’s storage hormone, and we have insulin to thank for our being able to survive all the lean times throughout our evolution, but now this has all gotten out of hand and we’ve been fattened up like livestock from excessive levels of this hormone.
Insulin not only controls fat storage, it also controls fat burning. So if you have too much insulin, you store more fat and you burn less, you fatten up in other words. That’s what this hormone does, and in excess, it does this in excess.
More people are starting to catch onto this idea through the internet, but this is something we’ve known for quite a while. I remember back in the 1980’s, when my wife had put on too much weight, coaching her on this and I told her, your insulin levels are too high on the diet you are on, one quite unremarkable, and I put her on a ketogenic diet.
She lost all the weight she wanted to easily, and marveled at how someone could eat so much fat and lose weight. Fat is the one macronutrient that doesn’t raise insulin levels though, and it really is all about insulin, so she ate more calories and lost weight, but that made sense if you had an idea about how the body works.
So you restrict things that elevate insulin, carbohydrates in particular, without going too crazy with protein either, and consume lots of fat which is neutral. You then store less fat and burn more fat, pretty simple actually.
When I diagnosed myself with diabetes I wasn’t overweight, and wasn’t eating the very high carb diet that most people eat either, but I did cut down on carbs quite a bit for blood sugar management reasons and I lost way too much weight, I overdid the carb restriction, and it was quite a battle to get back to a normal weight.
Medical authorities not only don’t want you to know the truth here, they go all out to scare people off of low carb diets. For instance they will say things like this diet increases cardiovascular disease, and the basis of it is their mistaken assumption that fat consumption increases the risk of this, but this isn’t backed up by science at all and in fact low carb diets clearly reduce the risk here.
The reason they do is that high insulin is far and away the biggest risk factor for cardiovascular disease, and high insulin may even be the sole cause of it, it’s that big of a factor. It is what causes the damage to the walls of blood vessels that lead to vascular disease and is behind all forms of CVD.
You can take pretty much everything the medical establishment tells you and not only assume it isn’t true, you can even reverse it. This advice is very harmful to your health actually, especially getting people to lower their fat intake and increase their carb intake, which is a horrible idea unless you want to get fat and kill yourself.
Once you get rid of the extra body fat, then other hormones can normalize, like leptin. Leptin is hugely important to health and especially to diabetes and being too fat causes leptin resistance from too much of this hormone running through us, just like too much insulin causes insulin resistance.
These days, most people have both types of resistances, and their metabolism is in shambles. Excess insulin damages cells, and a whole cascade of problems emerge, high blood sugar, high blood pressure, heart disease, cancer, and more.
High insulin is primarily responsible for most of the chronic illness we see today in modern society, so if you are in the business of making a profit from illness, it is certainly in your best interest to steer people clear of the real problem here, and they have done a fabulous job at this.
So many people remain brainwashed here, looking to conventional medical authorities who themselves have been brainwashed with a lot of junk science, and in a lot of cases, it isn’t even junk science, it’s just junk period.
Controlling one’s insulin levels is a huge part of being healthy, and more and more people are being turned on to this, changing their dietary practices toward ones that promote more hormonal balance, even though they may not understand any of the science behind this. It’s actually far easier to manage your weight than most people think, you just have to know a little about what you are doing.